We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access.
 >   > 
From Jesus to Constantine: A History of Early Christianity | [The Great Courses]

From Jesus to Constantine: A History of Early Christianity

Step back to Christianity's first three centuries to see how it transitioned from the religion of Jesus to a religion about Jesus. How did a single group from among many win the struggle for dominance to establish the beliefs central to the faith, rewrite the history of Christianity's internal conflicts, and produce a canon of sacred texts – the New Testament – that supported its own views?
Regular Price:$34.95
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Your Likes make Audible better!

'Likes' are shared on Facebook and Audible.com. We use your 'likes' to improve Audible.com for all our listeners.

You can turn off Audible.com sharing from your Account Details page.

OK

Publisher's Summary

Step back to Christianity's first three centuries to see how it transitioned from the religion of Jesus to a religion about Jesus. How did a single group from among many win the struggle for dominance to establish the beliefs central to the faith, rewrite the history of Christianity's internal conflicts, and produce a canon of sacred texts – the New Testament – that supported its own views?

These 24 lectures provide a fresh and provocative perspective on how a movement of perhaps only 20 lower-class followers of a Jewish apocalyptic preacher crucified as an enemy of the state grew to include nearly four million adherents in only 300 years. Professor Ehrman looks at the faith's beginnings, starting with the historical Jesus, Jewish-Christian relations, the way Paul and other Christians spread the new faith, hostility to the Christian mission, internal struggles within the faith, and the formation of traditional Christianity as we know it today.

Christianity argued its ancient roots by retaining the Jewish scriptures and arguing that it was, in fact, the fulfillment of what those scriptures had promised. Throughout these lectures, Professor Ehrman challenges old misconceptions and offers fresh perspectives on aspects of Christianity and its roots that many of us might have thought we already understood. By offering you a scholar's perspective on the origins of what Professor Ehrman describes as the most important institution in Western civilization, this engaging course will increase your understanding of Christianity today.

Disclaimer: Please note that this recording may include references to supplemental texts or print references that are not essential to the program and not supplied with your purchase.

©2004 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2004 The Great Courses

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (60 )
5 star
 (31)
4 star
 (19)
3 star
 (6)
2 star
 (2)
1 star
 (2)
Overall
4.3 (54 )
5 star
 (32)
4 star
 (12)
3 star
 (6)
2 star
 (1)
1 star
 (3)
Story
4.1 (55 )
5 star
 (27)
4 star
 (16)
3 star
 (7)
2 star
 (3)
1 star
 (2)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Eric Bloomington, MN, United States 09-18-13
    Eric Bloomington, MN, United States 09-18-13 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    87
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    166
    8
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    4
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "An Objective History of Early Christianity"

    This course is not a devotional course. It is not intended necessarily for Christians, but for those who are interested in the history of Christianity. This is not Christianity from a theological perspective. In other words, this is education. It is not a course on faith.

    Professor Ehrman is an erudite scholar on the Bible and the history of Christianity. If you wish to receive an objective education on the subject, this course is appropriate for you.

    21 of 23 people found this review helpful
  •  
    David United States 06-17-14
    David United States 06-17-14 Member Since 2012

    Hellicopter Man

    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    15
    14
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I recommend this with strong caution."
    Would you try another book from The Great Courses and/or Professor Bart D. Ehrman?

    I have been grinding through these and find them a mixed quality. Even the lesser are worth a listen. Perhaps more quantum mechanics next.


    Would you be willing to try another book from The Great Courses? Why or why not?

    Yes but I might run out of quality stuff. Keep it up. This is likely a growing market.


    What three words best describe Professor Bart D. Ehrman’s performance?

    Shallow. Sophmoric. Mediocher. Still worth the listen once you know these things.


    Did From Jesus to Constantine: A History of Early Christianity inspire you to do anything?

    Yes. Write a detailed critic below.


    Any additional comments?

    I recommend this with strong caution. Let me describe my qualifications to comment.

    I spent a year reading 200 bc -150 ad literature in this area with about 1,000 print out pages and a stack of books. I found one serious mistranslation in what was presented as "The Apostles Bible" as well as one seemingly deliberate anti-semetec translation in "The Marterdom of Pollycarp".

    So whats my beef with the lecturer? Lets start with anti semetism of the early Church. Theologens DID present plenty of grist for that mill. The lecturer, however, seems nearly oblivious the slander was two ways and that Jews of the era had the better of the Christians by virtue of shear numbers.

    Further, he also seems oblivious of The Talmud which includes all sorts of calumnies such that Reform Jews I asked referred to it as 'Folk Literature'. I consulted an Israeli Orthodox Jew who confirmed my translations were not only good but excellant. He reffered to Jesus as 'Your Man' not being permitted to say his name. I really liked that guy.

    Anyway, the Talmud presents non-Jews as little more then natural resources for the picking.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Adam KENT, WA, United States 10-16-13
    Adam KENT, WA, United States 10-16-13 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    9
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    12
    4
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "More speculation than scholarship"

    I was disappointed that there was more guessing than real answers. Per the professor, sources are scarce but then went on to do a lot speculating about things he and his colleagues really don't know. This is not helpful. I stuck out the whole lecture hoping it would get better which it did only marginally, cringing as it went along. I was reminded of Paul's statement, "Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth."

    9 of 23 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alexkes Romeoville, IL, United States 09-07-13
    Alexkes Romeoville, IL, United States 09-07-13 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    14
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    6
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Another Angry Athiests Views"
    What would have made From Jesus to Constantine: A History of Early Christianity better?

    If professor Bart D Ehrman would have walked up to the microphone, turned back around and sat down without opening his mouth. Just kidding he has a right to his distorted views.


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    Not sure but it won't be another book about Angry Atheists trying to get their message across.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Sadness.


    Any additional comments?

    It is saddens me that so many people are hung up on the little things in the Bible that they miss the hole picture about Jesus's message.It is about Loving your neighbor as yourself and loving God. If the New Testament was not true then surely the other letters of the bible would not have small discrepancies in them, because any good author would know that any intelligent person like professor Bart D Ehrmman would point this out to us who are less educated them he is. That we would be enlightened by his Atheistic views. We would quickly abandon our foolish faith and join him in celebrating our freedom of tolerance of all sin. If there is no higher power (God) to be accountable to then who's to say what is right or wrong? Anything goesBecause of those discrepancies one can tell that the four gospels in the New Testament are true. If you had four people that witness a crime their stories will not be the same unless they all got together in corroboration and straitened their stories out. But because the letters were written from different perspective of the authors as to what they (Witnessed)remembered the reliability of the four gospels are more credible in my opinion.

    14 of 82 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-4 of 4 results
Sort by:
  • Ed Kingsley
    5/4/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Very informative but loses momentum"
    Would you consider the audio edition of From Jesus to Constantine: A History of Early Christianity to be better than the print version?

    I have not read the print version but I suspect that some of the courses benefit from being in print


    Would you be willing to try another book from The Great Courses? Why or why not?

    Yes very much so and I already have many of them on my list


    Any additional comments?

    This course contains many fascinating insights into the early Christian community and is an ideal starting point for the amateur student of the early church. However, about three quarters of the way into the course the emphasis changed from the development of the Christian community in its social and economic context to a very detailed examination of the canon. While a detailed examination of proto-orthodoxy is doubtless essential it seemed to come at the expense of a detailed exposition of the philosophical and social needs that this new religion served in the context of the world that existed at the height of the Roman Empire. The final chapter provides a clumsy end point and I felt that there should have been 4 or 5 more lectures looking in greater detail and demographics and the dialogue between sophisticated pagan philosophies and Christianity,At the very end the speaker seemed to out himself as a person of faith and this seems to have created some blind spots and a certain sense of bias. As it happens I then started another course in this series entitled The fall of the Pagans and the Origins of Medieval Christianity By Professor Kenneth Hart and this latter series works as a perfect follow-on to this course. I highly recommend buying them together and listening to this one before Professor Hart's course.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-1 of 1 results

    There are no listener reviews for this title yet.

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

CANCEL

Thank You

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.